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Marks & Spencer, McDonald's UK, and Lloyds are among the many brands which have now stopped advertising on any Google-owned sites, because of the risk their ads might show up next to terrorist content, according to Sky News.
They are all citing "brand safety" as the reason, which refers to the procedures involved in making sure a well-known brand's ads don't appear against violent or hateful content.
- Havas UK clients - the BBC, O2, Domino's, the Royal Mail and others
- The Guardian
- The UK government
- McDonald's UK
Vodafone, Barclays, and Sky are also considering pulling their ads, according to The Guardian.
This all comes after a decision by the UK arm of media group Havas to suspend all advertising on Google on behalf of its clients, including O2, the Royal Mail, the BBC, and Domino's.
The agency made the move after a Times investigation found household brands were inadvertently funding extremism, because their ads were showing up on hate sites.
The Times report found that ads for hundreds of big companies, universities, and charities were appearing next to YouTube videos created by sympathisers to terrorist groups like the Islamic State, and the pro-Nazi Combat 18. One ad by Mercedes appeared on a pro-Islamic State YouTube video which was viewed 115,000 times, according to the report.
On Friday, Google admitted in a blog post that it could "do a better job" of ensuring households brands weren't funding hateful content. A source also told Business Insider that Google was meeting the Cabinet Office on Friday.
The CEO of the world's biggest advertising agency holding company, WPP's Martin Sorrell, said Google and other major media companies like Facebook "cannot masquerade as technology companies" and needed to take their responsibilities seriously.
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